Furious parents have accused their son's school of 'discrimination' and 'making him a target for bullies' after teachers told him not to have his hair in a ponytail.
Rachael Howard and Robert Brown were furious when their son Tyler, 11, told them that he was barred from wearing his hair pulled back – although the same style is OK for girls.
Robert, 36, said: "Me and his mum did try to talk him out of it at first and with him starting a new school we didn’t want him to become a target among the kids, especially as he doesn’t know many of them yet.
"But then we decided it’s his choice and we shouldn’t take that away from him. He wants it to look like Thor’s hair in Marvel Avengers but it’s not long enough yet.
"He’s in all the right uniform, they’re taking away his own rights."
His parents, who strongly believe that if a girl had a short back and sides "it would be allowed", sent him back to Alder Community High School in Hyde, Greater Manchester, with his hair tied up.
They claim that he was promised that he would be allowed to leave his hair as it was for some school photos being taken that day, but the head teacher approached Tyler directly and told him to take his bobble out.
Rachael, 33, claims that teachers then forbid him from calling home for clarity and support.
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She added: "When my son asked why he couldn’t wear his hair in a ponytail, the headteacher responded by saying 'If you don’t like the rules move schools'."
Since that day, his defiant parents have not sent him to school, meaning he has missed two days.
In a Facebook post, Rachael blasted the school, writing: "First of all that is sexual discrimination, you are stereotyping my son to say you’re a boy and should have short hair and girls should have long hair.
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"It’s 2020 and we teach our children to be open and diverse with their gender and lifestyle and this is not OK!!!!!
"This is a school claiming to support LGBT and gender diversity, yet they made my son feel embarrassed, singled out and a target for bullies on his third day at school."
The school's website outlines its rules regarding pupil appearance, stating there is a blanket ban on ‘extreme hairstyles’. These includes heads shorn below a number two, patterns, skinheads, mohicans and top knots.
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